Pakistan is already reaping benefits from CPEC, says PM Abbasi
Islamabad, Apr 09: Prime Minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi, addressing the opening ceremony of the Boao economic forum in China’s Hainan province on Tuesday, said regional connectivity, open trade and increased economic growth were the key to promote tolerance and deny space to extremism.
“In Pakistan today, step by step, brick by brick, a brave new Asia is taking shape,” he said.
The China Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) is fast reaching fruition, said the PM, terming it an excellent example of an open, coordinated, and inclusive development paradigm that benefits all stakeholders. “We have already begun reaping dividends of CPEC rail, road and infrastructure projects. CPEC investment and its spin-off effects have generated thousands of jobs. 10,000 MW have been added to our national grid, ameliorating our chronic energy shortages.”
He said the development of the deep seaport of Gwadar was proceeding at a fast track, at the southern tip of this Corridor. “On completion, it would not only serve as a transit and transshipment hub, but become an economic nucleus.”
“Pakistan’s economy is growing 6 per cent annually,” he said. “Over the medium-term, our growth rates are expected to surpass global averages. And by 2050, we will be the worlds fifteenth largest economy.”
Foreign Minister Khawaja Muhammad Asif, Interior Minister Ahsan Iqbal, Ambassador Masood Khalid and other senior officials also attended the event.
Boao Forum is a non-governmental and non-profit international organisation which was formally inaugurated in 2001. It aims to promote and deepen economic exchanges, coordination, cooperation within Asia, between Asia and other parts of the world.
Chinese President Xi Jinping, in his keynote address at the event, pledged to take steps to further open the world’s number two economy, indirectly addressing major complaints by the United States in a simmering trade row.